x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 20 January 2018

UAE finish 14th at Asian Volleyball Championship

Grzegorz Rys, the UAE coach, disappointed after hosts’ fourth consecutive defeat, this time to Iraq, reports Ahmed Rizvi.

UAE would be regreting their defeat to Lebanon in the Asian Volleyball Championship. Duncan Chard for the National
UAE would be regreting their defeat to Lebanon in the Asian Volleyball Championship. Duncan Chard for the National

DUBAI // The UAE suffered their fourth consecutive defeat in the Asian Volleyball Championships, losing to Iraq on the final day of the event at Al Nasr on Sunday to finish the tournament in 14th place.

After starting the tournament with a victory over Uzbekistan in the preliminary round, the UAE lost both their matches in the play-off pools, to Lebanon and then Thailand.

They suffered a third consecutive 3-0 loss in the 9th-16th place classification round to Qatar, and eventually dropped a 25-19, 15-25, 25-23, 25-22 decision to Iraq.

Grzegorz Rys, the UAE coach, reckons the loss to Lebanon in their opening match of the classification rounds was the turning point in their campaign.

“We lost the match without any fight and it is disappointing because I felt we could continue our form from the Uzbekistan win,” Rys said.

“We played below our normal level and I think it was decisive that we lost this match.”

India, meanwhile, defeated Lebanon 27-25, 23-25, 25-23, 21-25, 17-15 in the play-off for seventh place, while Australia bounced back after losing the first set to down Thailand 26-28, 25-14, 25-18, 26-24 for fifth place.

“I am not really happy with the team’s performance,” said Bir Singh Yadav, the India coach. “We did not show any consistency and were up and down right through the tournament.

“If the players had been consistent, I am confident we could beat any team here. The victory over Australia [in the play-off pools], who are a big team, proves that.

“If we had played at that level right through the tournament, we could have finished a lot higher.”

arizvi@thenational.ae